A fairly common question with modern video games is whether or not games as a whole are becoming easier. On the surface, it would appear to be a no-brainer: It’s far more likely that you’ll see the end of a video game nowadays than it was ten or twenty years ago. But we need to ask ourselves, are we asking the right question? What if difficulty is based on more than how far you can get into a game before hitting a wall?
When someone kills a monster, not just that player’s party but everyone who was seriously involved in the fight gets 100% of the XP and loot for the kill. When an event is happening in the world – when the bandits are terrorizing a village – everyone in the area has the same motivation, and when the event ends, everyone gets rewarded.
Guild Wars 2 is still in development with an estimated 2011 release, so it will be a while before we know if this really is the right direction for MMOs to head towards. Personally, I’m hoping the risks ArenaNet are taking with this approach pay off, and it finally results in an MMO that truly feels like a social experience.